I just recently read this EXCELLENT blog post (it’s also a book by the same author) on 2 degree shifts. Go read it if you have a chance! Basically the author talks about how making small changes (two degree shifts) is really how you achieve great things!
Such a brilliant way to look at the concept of progress not perfection, which something I’ve struggled with constantly. I have definitely been a 180 degree shift person. As in, “Let’s overhaul everything, no carbs, no sugar, and start training for a marathon all at once.” Of course, that kind of attitude normally lasted for three days and then I’d get hungry and get blisters and throw in the towel and wind up on the couch eating ice cream and doughnuts.
So by embracing the 2 degree shift mentality you admit the best way to make permanent changes is to make small changes.
2 degree shifts for your health if you’re just starting out:
- Eat a fruit or vegetable at each meal and snack.
- Workout twice a week
- Swap pop for water (my husband has lost 14 pounds since Christmas by implementing this tip!)
- Be mindful of your eating cues—eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full.
And then, of course, you take those shifts and shift two degrees again—building success upon success.
2 degree shifts if you’ve been at it for awhile and want to kick things up a notch:
- Increase the intensity or duration of your workouts. Try a HIIT workout, new routine or a longer distance to push yourself two degrees more.
- Increase the amount of “real” food in your house and decrease the amount of unhealthy, overly processed junk. Do this a little at a time over a few shopping trips.
- Incorporate organic food starting with meat/dairy and the dirty dozen.
- Train for a new distance or event. If you’re a runner sign up for a triathlon. Love dance cardio, try a Color Run with friends. Mix things up by 2 degrees!
Of course this mentality doesn’t just apply to your physical health—it covers so many things relationally, emotionally, spiritually. A two degree shift in your parenting may be a long hug when they walk in the door. Relationally, it may be sending a text once a week to a family member just to check in. It may be reading a Bible verse while you eat breakfast. It may be finding one thing to recognize and praise in a coworker who annoys you. It may be finding one thing a day to be thankful for.
Bottom line–I just love this concept! It’s summarized something I’ve felt and been trying to implement in my life in such a real, visual way. Just 2 degrees at a time.
What 2 degree shift can you embrace today?